Riverside

Update at July 2019

Wagga Wagga City Council recently concluded the public exhibition of the Stage 2 Site Analysis and Concept Plan for the Riverside precinct.

The Plan document for Stage 2 addresses the following design strategies and themes:-

Strategies

  • Celebrate the local heritage

  • Respond to the Riverside Park as a major civic place

  • Provide opportunity for a range of cultural, recreational, social & leisure and environmental events & activities to take place

Themes

  • Generate a monumental sense of ‘Place’

  • Create a destination which befits the iconic location & history with Wagga Wagga

  • Be optimistic and playful with distinct landscape themes

  • Facilitate opportunities for passive, active, programmed and un-programmed activities

  • Connect the park to the city and be accessible to all

Committee for Wagga is very supportive of the Plan and we look forward to Stage 2 development commencing in the near future.

Background

The Murrumbidgee River is a vital community asset and the recommendations outlined in the 2010 Riverside Masterplan are arguably the most important to the city’s culture and social fabric. 

The Riverside strategic master plan was developed in 2010 and Council committed over $1M to undertake landscaping and amenity improvements to the Wagga Beach area as part of stage 1. The improvements demonstrated the strong demand for more quality open spaces and evidenced the community’s desire to reconnect and utilise the river. Since its completion the space has been activated by a number of successful community events and gained very positive feedback from both residents and visitors to the city. For example, Borambola Wines hosted the Cork and Fork Festival at the beach area following the completion of stage 1 and attracted strong, vibrant crowds of approximately 4,000 people. 

Council has since taken important steps to enable further implementation of the Master Plan, resolving to end the Wagga Beach Caravan Park lease in 2019. The Caravan Park site is identified as under-utilised land due to its proximity to the central business area and can be better transformed into a large community space used for general recreation, festivals and events on a village green. 

Stage 2 of the project has the potential to feature commercial opportunities for cafes and restaurants, improve pedestrian accessibility from the central business area across Tarcutta Street and strengthen the precincts appeal to both the community and visitors to the city. 

Committee 4 Wagga members have identified festivals and events as the most important cultural activity in the city. Currently, events such as Wagga Live, Gears and Beers, Fusion and the Wagga Food and Wine Festival have the capacity to grow and attract more visitors however the space available in the civic centre is restrictive and expensive to manage. 

Detailed designs and planning have currently not been undertaken and the project remains unfunded. High priority must be given to the Riverside project to ensure it is shovel ready when the caravan park site is vacated in 2019 and partner funding from State and Federal Government can be secured.  

Over 4,000 people attended the Cork and Fork event at the beach immediately following the stage 1 project. 


Status: 

Planning: Preliminary 

Cost Estimate: Yes 

Funding: No 

Key Stakeholders: 

Wagga Wagga City Council 
Committee 4 Wagga 
Businesses 
Community 

Recommendation: 

Commit to planning and funding to ensure stage 2 of the Riverside Master Plan can commence in 2019